Friday, February 17, 2017

late summer blues

 first day of school


end of summer garden jungle

the cucumber hunt


little fuzzy quince

tiny apples

pretty spotty pears

apple eater

Hello my lovely ones,

I'm writing to you this week from inside my snow globe. I was going to say from inside my shower screen, but the imagery isn't as good. And actually it's kind of like a reverse snow globe anyway. I'm sitting inside and the rest of the beautiful world is outside. Shake it up and a flurry of pretty leaves and flower petals fall from the trees.

I've been sitting inside my snow globe for close to a week now. Sitting here alone hoping for the lid to lift and for things to feel different. And just now I've started to feel anxious that I'm ending the week feeling the same way that I started. Nothing seems to have changed.

From in here the world looks grimy and a bit hopeless and sad. Even though we still have a few weeks left of summer, the days are getting noticeably shorter and cooler and I fear the long winter to come. I fear that the sunshine is already growing weaker and as we slowly pull the decaying summer veg from the garden and replace it with winter crops, I worry about those icy months when the garden is only green and does not boast with bright colour and bounty dripping from its vines. I'm not ready to go back to those months of frost, wet and cold.

I agonise over the stories my children bring home, not able to understand the way kids treat each other and that teachers can be so impatient and unseeing. I wonder how in this day and age with all that we know, that more of an emphasis isn't given to teaching about sustainability and care for our planet and putting plans into action.

I feel panicked at the never ending sameness of my life. The ebbs and flows are practically predictable and feel impossibly tedious from where I sit right now.

I feel disappointed about the growing season and am already tired of the excuses I'll have to repeat to myself and others as the harvest we had been so looking forward to doesn't eventuate.

And I worry about the world. About the people and the creatures who should treat others and be treated themselves with kindness and care, and that the way things are now, is not how they always will be.

Yet despite all this, I've labelled this place where I sit my snow globe because I'm well aware of the beauty that sits outside its rounded walls. I am also all too aware that if I were a better housekeeper and brushed the cobwebs away and scrubbed the grime from the glass, that the sunshine would stream in and bleach the dirty carpet from my sight and the ache from my heart.

It's a funny place to spend time, this grey world of mine, because I don't feel overcome by despair; I just feel full of melancholy. I am aware of all the gifts I have been given, I just feel too tired to play with them right now. And this is not depression, I don't want to stay in bed and I can make a list for you a mile long of all the reasons I have to be grateful. And I believe them. Every single one. Everything just feels tainted somewhat. Bland.

At the start of my week I was kind to myself and felt that the greyness must be the result of last week's virus leaving my body. All those days spent shivering and burning up had had a physical effect on my body and now this was the emotional effect. After a few days I decided it was seasonal. I could feel summer melting into autumn, and so in turn the moon and the tides and the stars were having their effect on me. Then I got a bit cross with myself. How dare someone with so much privilege take it for granted for one moment. What was the point of wasting even one second. But the more I questioned how I felt, the more uncomfortable things felt, the more I understood that I had to lean into this mood. To push at it and poke at it and try to find its origins, its meaning and look at it from all perspectives. The worse it made me feel, the better, because hopefully somewhere hidden inside I would discover some answers.

I don't know if any of this will make sense to you, or be of any interest. I contemplated just posting a couple of photos for today's post with a promise of a proper blog when things shift, hopefully over the next few days. There is no craft, no garden, no farm, or family in these words and that makes me feel a bit odd.

When I spoke to my farmer boy about having no story other than this greyness for my blog this week, he suggested I write it down anyway, let him read it and then delete it. I knew I wouldn't delete it though. That's not my style.

He also suggested that I take a 24-hour break from social media, which so often is his solution with the girls, and I think he was surprised when I agreed. I love social media, but noticing how often I open an app and scroll mindlessly without thinking has been interesting. And having a break from what has lately felt like all the people shouting at me to look at them, do things their way, or compare myself to impossible perfection has been a bit of a relief. Life feels a lot less noisy without all the chatter. I think I'm ready to join my girls in their limited social media access during the week, possibly. As a trial.

Which brings me to the feeling that maybe this week is the discomfort before a change. I've been saying for months that I'm stuck and ready for something new, something more. But late yesterday afternoon as I ran through my list of possible new projects to take on this year and then neatly followed each with a reason why I don't actually want to, it occurred to me that maybe I am scared of losing what I have in the process. Life on the other side of the snow globe looks pretty good.

So I'm right back where I started. But glad that I have the weekend and a break from routine to try to get out of my head and stuck right into life with those I love. Hopefully the grey will become mauve...



And just for the record, here's some other stuff that I've been getting up to this snow globe week.

Reading - After watching the Little Women film last week and noticing how much more of the story it covered, I checked back in with another copy of the book we have on our shelves only to discover that Louisa M Alcott wrote two books that were eventually published as one. Good Wives being the second part. So much to my delight, I have spent some bonus hours with the March family this week reading the rest of the book.

Listening - I'm still making my way through the StartUp podcast although I think I've almost reached the current episodes. The most recent series examines Dov Charney and the demise of his company American Apparel, and the start up of his new tee-shirt company. I'm loving it and it makes the long school commutes and the hanging out of the laundry and the weeding of the garden chores I actually look forward to.

Knitting - I'm happy to report that I've turned the heels of the spotty socks and am on my way up the ankles. I love them and am hoping that the recipient feels the same when she sees them this afternoon when she returns from canoe camp.

Cooking - Beetroot for salads, blackberries in fruit leather, beans in stir fries, cucumbers in pickles (not really cooking but you know...). Hopefully by this time next week we'll be eating sweet corn.

Watching - This Is Us. Oh my goodness, Kevin and Randall!!!!

Planting - Lettuce, cabbage, beetroot, rocket, carrots, spring onions, parsley, broccoli and chives.

Contemplating - What to do with the list of ethical businesses wanting to work with me on my instagram and blog. Would be so good to be able to look out for the good guys, but how can I do it and keep my integrity.

Running - Off to gym right now.

Hurting - On the knee that I landed on when I was stupidly picking blackberries on the dam wall earlier in the week and feel in.

Hoping - To be out of my snow globe and back to my silly, interpretive dance, optimistic, self ASAP.

Sending - All my love and wishes for some warm sunshine on your skin, a gentle breeze to dry your washing, a book you can't put down and a great big cuddle.

Love Kate xx





15 comments:

  1. I hope you are soon feeling brighter and out of this nasty dark place. I bet anything that it is post viral. Here in the UK we are seeing the first signs of long awaited spring. The pretty white snowdrops and yellow aconites are out. The daffodils are poking through and we are getting 10 hours daylight. I love our summers when it is light until almost 10pm. This dark phase will pass. Everything does. In the meantime, sending you much love and good wishes and hope you are soon back to your cheery self.

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  2. This is exactly how I often feel thanks for putting it so well x It will lift x rebecca 😀

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  3. I actually managed to get to my computer so I can comment properly & not send you messages via insta!
    Firstly, big hugs to you. I feel like you need them.
    Secondly, I have started logging out of instagram from Friday night to Monday morning. Its good. Very Good.
    Then last week I done this stop scrolling challenge ( google it ), the point of which is to not atop you using social media but to make you more mindful when you use it. Really good.
    Also, I'm not sure how much of my instagram you actually see but if I am one of those people who come across all scream-y ( & I probably do because I use it as a place to empty my thoughts but I'm thinking I might want to stop that )I am sorry.
    Here in Perth our growing season has not been great. It was looking good but has become stunted. I feel robbed. Mainly of tomatoes....
    I am loving This is Us too. Still loving Vikings & also The Crown.
    I'm also going to recommend a really little book to you- Destination Simple. I read it in an hour & liked it.
    Big love Kate xx

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    1. I hope you don't stop using insta to empty your thoughts, I love your feed. It feels real and unstaged.
      Just joined the stop scrolling challenge too.
      cheers Kate

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  4. A thoughtful and thought provoking post. Maybe it is a February thing? I have had a lot of the same feelings this week, especially the parts about social media and the lack of kindness, and the Autumn twinge to the air that makes me tetchy about being thrown back into Winter too soon. Sending a Peace, happiness and kind thoughts.

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  5. Oh Kate! You write about your feelings so well. I too often feel the same way at the moment, but wouldn't express it anywhere near as eloquently.

    It's a funny thing this social media stuff, sometimes it's a lifeline, sometimes you just feel like you're lost and drowning. The line between finding connection and being completely overwhelmed is very fine for me at the moment. I may join you in you're break, although, it has infiltrated my life so, that I'm not great at being disciplined when it comes to breaks.

    Thank you for sharing your truth x

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  6. Oh Kate! You write about your feelings so well. I too often feel the same way at the moment, but wouldn't express it anywhere near as eloquently.

    It's a funny thing this social media stuff, sometimes it's a lifeline, sometimes you just feel like you're lost and drowning. The line between finding connection and being completely overwhelmed is very fine for me at the moment. I may join you in you're break, although, it has infiltrated my life so, that I'm not great at being disciplined when it comes to breaks.

    Thank you for sharing your truth x

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  7. I really loved this post, not because you are in a dark snow globe but because of your honesty and your courage in sharing how you are feeling. (and your ability to say it so well) I know that at times I have felt exactly the same as you and I'm sure many others have and do as well, you are not alone.
    I don't have the ability to convey my thoughts in written form, so take this reply as me sitting by you, holding space for you while you talk or not.
    I hope that you are soon feeling more comfortable in yourself.
    Now I'm off to check out Reannon's scrolling challenge, definitely something I need.
    cheers Kate

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  8. Hi Kate, I love the analagy of a snow globe filled with pretty leaves and flowers, that is such a pretty image. Also I think the 24 hours without social media is such a positive idea. Enjoy the weekend. X

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  9. Sounds to me like a lot of crafting gets done unconsciously and you writing your blog for us to read is crafting. They do say that a problem shared is a problem halved. A lot of people reading your blog will, or have felt the same way that you do at one time or another. So will read this and think hey this is so normal and it doesn't matter how grateful or lucky you are it's just there. It's perfectly normal to feel the way you do, it's not wrong it just is. It will pass sometimes sooner than others family is the grounding and the rest superficial. Live each day with however it comes. We are all out here thinking of you.

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  10. Hey hun,
    I read your blog often but don't comment.I am sending you a *big hug*. I am a young Nan and live in the UK, for us we are heading into the delights of Spring after a cold Winter.I have a tiny piece of land which I rent from the Parish Council (called an allotment) and cannot wait to see what I am able to grow on it this year. Each year something is a terrible crop and something is good - potluck. Like our potatoes last year were a terrible crop but our cucumbers were coming out of our ears! In the cold Winter there is nothing like eating homemade pickles/canned jars of your home grown produce to make you smile and remind you that the seasons will change:) I am glad you posted about being a bit grey. It is healthy not to constantly have a wonderful time. Life is ups and downs - it makes us appreciate its ups :) In our world today it's easy to be overwhelmed at the lack of love - but we must keep our little light shining as it will make a difference:)Take care hunny, be kind to yourself and do one thing solely for you. Last week I stood barefoot in my garden for a few minutes breathing icy cold air and watching a few snowflakes fall - crazy but oh so enjoyable :)
    Hugs
    Sue from across the pond :)

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  11. Three words: out of Africa. Can't believe I haven't read it before now xxx

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  12. I am so glad you decided to post this blog. I don't think you are at all alone with how you are feeling (although I know from experience that that knowledge doesn't really help the funk). Blah, that's how I'm feeling at the minute, Blah. It's like I'm on a hamster wheel instead of in a snow globe, but I can see all the wonderful things that everyone else seems to be doing and enjoying and I'm stuck there on the wheel of Blah! LOL

    It's little things that lift my spirit though, like seeing those spotty socks of yours on Instagram <3, sometimes things I didn't even feel like doing - like dance class, dreaded going, nearly talked myself out of it several times, finally forced myself through the doors and came out buzzing!

    I think you just have to accept how you're feeling sometimes and wait for it to pass. I saw a quote on Facebook the other day -

    This too shall pass

    It may pass like a kidney stone

    But it will pass. LOL

    Big hugs to you, I hope your funk lifts soon and you are back enjoying all those wonderful blessings. ;)

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  13. A funk. It's normal. It's necessary. Without the funks, how do you even recognise the 'fuck yeahs'?

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  14. The snow globe analogy perfectly describes that feeling. There is nothing so frustrating as wanting to do things, but just not being able to get yourself to do it. I love your blackberry photos, I am looking at the beautiful bush out my front window that is unfortunately taking over the front garden- when I finish this coffee I need to go and start to get rid go it.

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Thanks so much for stopping by...

I do read every single comment you leave and appreciate it very much, but I should let you know that I can be a wee bit on the useless side when replying to comments, that's just me, everyday life sometimes gets in the way....so I'll apologise now, just in case.

Kate XX

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